Updated December 12, 2004

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By Christopher Bollyn


The disregard shown by the Democratic Party and the mainstream media for the serious questions and concerns about how private companies count our votes “smacks of complicity.” Despite their oft-repeated promise that “every vote” would “be counted,” before the ballots could even be tallied in the crucial swing state of Ohio, Sen. John Forbes Kerry had conceded defeat.

The votes in Ohio are officially “re-counted” and tallied 10 days after Election Day, Tod A. Rapp, the man who wrote the software that tabulates the votes in nearly half the counties in Ohio, told American Free Press. The outstanding provisional ballots are only counted after that, Rapp said.

Rapp, the founder of Triad Governmental Systems, Inc. of Xenia, Ohio, wrote the computer program that tallies the punch-card ballots in the centralized counting systems used in 41 counties in Ohio. Rapp, whose sons now manage the family run company, is a generous supporter of the Republican Party and the presidential campaign of George W. Bush.

The second largest vendor of vote-counting machines in Ohio, in terms of the number of counties served, is Election Systems & Software (ES&S), a privately owned company based in Omaha.

Together ES&S and Triad GSI count the votes in 80 out of the 88 counties in Ohio. ES&S, however, manages the elections and counts the votes in the most populous counties of the state.

There were numerous problems with voting machines in Ohio, where Bush reputedly won by some 136,000 votes. Some voters had to wait until 3 a.m. to cast their ballots, and a computer error gave Bush 3,893 extra votes in one precinct in Franklin County.

“It was not clear whether Ohio experienced any other problems with electronic ballots,” The Washington Post reported. Despite a host of problems with the unverifiable electronic vote-counting machines used across the nation, the Democratic National Committee (DNC) has shown no interest in investigating the problems or lack of a verifiable audit trail.

“The simple fact of the matter is that Republicans received more votes than Democrats, and we’re not contesting this election,” DNC spokesman Jano Cabrera said.

In a post-election letter to all 50 secretaries of state, Terry McAuliffe, DNC chairman, wrote: “After such a highly charged and competitive election, I want to make sure that every American can be confident that our electoral process worked and continues to be the model for the world. The best way to achieve these goals is to ensure that every vote cast has been accurately counted.”

But have all the votes been accurately counted? Did Bush really receive more votes than Kerry? With private companies and centralized computer systems processing the overwhelming majority of the ballots in the United States, the public has lost its oversight of the vote-counting process.

Electronic voting machines and the private companies that operate the voting systems and count the votes have “eliminated any public oversight,” investigative journalist and critic of voting machines Lynn Landes told AFP. We now have “faith-based voting,” she said.

“Why have the Democrats not safeguarded the integrity of the election?” Landes asked. “It smacks of complicity.”

Election data from Florida reveal some very disturbing results. Comparing the vote tallies with the numbers of registered voters, Landes found that Bush won unusually high numbers of votes in some Democratic counties that have very few registered Republican voters.

In Liberty County, for example, registered Democrats outnumber Republicans 11 to one, but Bush won the county getting more than six times as many votes as the county has registered Republican voters.

Kerry, on the other hand, received only some 30 percent of the registered Democrats’ votes.

Bush landslides occurred in several counties in Florida. Landes said in these counties Bush must have won the entire Republican base, all of the independents and a huge number of Democrats.


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